I am writing a book called The Art of Making Something From Nothing with fellow In Place of War colleague, Teresa Bean.
The book of edited interviews with thirty radical change-makers from places of conflict will also include a toolkit of ideas around making change with very little to inspire people across the world that change is possible. I am drawing on my experiences of community engagement in conflict zones, the challenges around international work, some of the learnings about building international projects and the success stories of how we can support those in conflict zones from afar.
Case studies such as Benny Muding, an MC from Kitgum in Uganda who has a hip-hop agri-business, growing and selling produce on a farm run my hip-hop artists and the profit they make enables them to go into the local prison to deliver artistic projects, which in turn means less prisoners re-offend and hip-hop as a social movement in Medellin, Colombia taking those out of drug cartels into hip-hop crews and expanding life chances and inspirational people like David Tovey, a homeless artist that tried to kill himself, but found meaning in art and now helps other homeless people find purpose through his homeless art exhibition.
The book will explore change-makers in contexts affected by war, post-war, gang-war and political oppression. From satire used as a tool to critique the government in Zimbabwe to music used as a tool to take people out of gangs in Brazil.
The book will be accompanied by a website, animations and a toolkit of ideas and published in 2019.